Natural Products Insider

MAY-JUN 2019

INSIDER is the leading information source for marketers, manufacturers and formulators of dietary supplements, healthy foods and cosmeceuticals. Since 1997, INSIDER has been serving the needs of the global nutrition industry.

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34 INSIDER May /June 2019 on it is hardly a novel one, but it is important when carving out a space in the market. Schmidt explained how one of the larger nutritional bar brands—KIND ® —did the same with its products. Based on a 2010 survey by DuPont of more than 1,000 bar consumers, Schmidt said the results were clear. "Rough surface texture, nutty fl avors, and roasted and sweet fl avors were major drivers of liking," he explained. "While at the time of the study, that was white space, brands such as KIND have since moved in and profi ted handsomely, and Euromonitor International expected fruit and nut bars to continue to strongly outperform overall snack bars in the next fi ve years." That expectation became a reality; according to Euromonitor International, fruit and nut bars grew at a CAGR of 15.2 percent from 2013 to 2018, compared to a CAGR of 4.9 percent for the snack bar category as a whole. Instead of capitalizing on what consumers want, brands can capitalize on what they don't want or can't have. Blake's Seed-Based are bars made from, unsurprisingly, seeds—a combination of pumpkin, sunfl ower, fl ax and others—while notably leaving out any kind of nuts. In fact, the products steer clear of the top eight allergens, including wheat, peanut, tree nuts, soy, milk and egg. "Allergen-free positioning is still niche, but has seen some growth," Schmidt said. He noted that, while only about one in 10 U.S. consumers have a food allergy, "the allergen-free tag has the potential to evolve into a sort of next-level clean label identity. If you look at a brand like Blake's Seed-Based, it formulates for the niche, but its marketing is much more inclusive. It's aiming to be an allergen-free brand that can be enjoyed by all clean label seekers." Sometimes, it doesn't even take surveys or independent market research to identify a trend; it simply requires a look at sales data. The probiotic category was valued by Mordor Intelligence at $46.5 billion in 2017, with an anticipated CAGR of 7.5 percent through 2023. Prebiotics, the "fertilizer" of sorts that feeds probiotics in the gut, is also a category on the rise, growing 130.4 percent in 2017 to $41.4 million and expected to reach a whopping $3.98 billion by 2020, according to Nutrition Business Journal (NBJ) data. It should come as no surprise, then, that prebiotics and probiotics are increasingly making their way into bars. According to Schmidt, Innova Market Insights data showed probiotic launches in the cereal and energy bars and sports bars categories more than tripled from 2016 to 2018. One such bar is Nestl é's Goo dBe ™ brand, which contains yogurt and 1 billion colony-forming units (CFUs) of probiotics. GoodBelly Probiotics ® and Welo ™ also boast probiotic bars, while Truth Bar ™ combines both prebiotics and probiotics—often referred to as synbiotics—in its bars. One more "ingredient" fi nding its way into the nutritional bars market (as well as others): altruism. Schmidt pointed to three brands adding social impact into their products: This Bar Saves Lives ™ , EM+PACT ® and ReGrained ® . This Bar Saves Lives puts its impact directly into the name; for every bar it sells, it donates food packets full of vitamins and minerals to a hungry child in need. EM+PACT, a protein bar marketed toward women, not only creates bars packed with natural and nutritious ingredients ranging from fl axseed and tart cherry to prebiotics and probiotics, it also partners with female empowerment charities. ReGrained tackles the issue of food waste by making its products from "upcycled" beer byproducts, turning an ingredient that was once disposed of into something nutritious and delicious. The way today's consumer base is trending—more active, more health- conscious, more on-the-go—it only makes sense that the nutritional bars market is thriving. "Bars are an on-the-go type of food," Jacques noted. "People are cooking less, they're not in their homes as much, they're on-the-go more. They're more willing to buy a bar than food they can go home and cook." But to stand out within a thriving market, brands are being forced to innovate. Whether that means introducing new ingredients like chicken protein and Choleve or taking established ingredients like prebiotics and probiotics and presenting them in new and exciting forms, innovation, as always, is key. Bars The way today's consumer base is trending—more active, more health-conscious, more on-the-go—it only makes sense that the nutritional bars market would thrive.

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